Have you ever walked through the woods at night and noticed a small glowing object near the base of the trees? That’s bioluminescence happening in mushrooms – the creation and emission of light by organisms. Glow-in-the-dark fungi aren’t just something you’ll see in the woods. If you’ve seen the new Detective Pikachu movie, you may have encountered another species of glowing mushrooms!
What We Know About The Glow
By now, you’ve probably got some questions, like how does the glowing occur? And why? Well, the greenish light emitted from the mushrooms is the result of a release of energy from a chemical reaction. Research has shown that when the oxyluciferin in the mushroom releases its oxygen molecule, then it’s time to get lit. Only about 80 species of fungi are known to glow. Perhaps these funny fungi are drawing the attention of insects or animals that feed on the mushroom to disperse its spores, like the way a sweet-smelling flower attracts insects for the same reason.
Glowing Mushrooms From Different Worlds
If you’re having trouble finding glowing mushrooms in the woods, have no fear, Detective Pikachu is here! The new movie shows off different types of Pokémon, including the Morelull. The Morelull is a Pokémon that resembles a mushroom with its stem-like body and three sprouting mushroom caps on its head. At night, the Morelull can make its spores glow with glittering sparks just like glowing mushrooms around you.
Fun Fact – Hypnotizing Spores
You can find Morelull in the Detective Pikachu trailer! When the trainers come across a herd of Bulbasaur, look for a few Morelull fluttering around them.
It’s Time For An Adventure!
Now it’s time for you to find glowing mushrooms near you. If you’re stumped on where to find nature’s nightlights, well, look for a stump! They are known to surround the bases of dead trees or wrap themselves around dead branches.
Popular glowing mushrooms:
-Bleeding Fairy Helmet
Western Pennsylvania is home to several varieties. They can be found in backyards, along trails and in our parks such as:
-Powdermill Nature Preserve
-Beechwood Nature Reserve
While you’re out looking for mushrooms, keep your eyes open for fireflies! Fireflies use luciferins, light emitting compounds, like mushrooms to glow.
Can You Find The Words Relating to Mushrooms?
Learn more in Nature Lab!